Inside View

Zofingen: New Organization and Strengthening of Production Support

Pilot plant in Zofingen

The Development Group in Transition

In recent years, Chemical Process Development at the Zofingen site has undergone significant change. Pilot operation was integrated into the group in 2016, followed by the production support laboratory in 2017.

Process Development serves as an important interface for technology transfers from the customer to Siegfried as well as for transfers between Siegfried sites. In addition to introducing new drug substances to the production plant, the to-do list includes constant optimization of established production processes and continuous production support e.g. for troubleshooting. In the associated pilot plant revised or newly developed processes can be tested on large scale if required.

The Zofingen development group is in close contact with the developers in Evionnaz, Nantong and Pennsville. Collectively they form a tightly integrated R&D network with a lively exchange and support when dealing with scientific and technical issues. 

Therefore, the Chemical Development group provides services internally and externally. Its mission is to provide robust, safe as well as economically and ecologically optimized processes to enable the production of drug substances at the required level of quality. 

Owing to the pleasing growth rate experienced by the Siegfried Group in recent years, Process Development’s area of activity has grown. Several cross-plant projects were initiated with the sites in Minden, Pennsville, Nantong and St. Vulbas. 

This growth of responsibility implied that ­Process Development underwent a process of reorganization in 2018 with a focus on chemical process development. 

New team structure

In addition to growing, the team structure introduced in 2018 focuses mainly on work processed by defined teams of experts. The original development team (Process Development) – by far the largest laboratory team in terms of numbers – and the pilot team (Process Scale-up) were recently joined by the Process Technology and Process Excellence teams. The two latter teams reflect the objective to strengthen support for the established products in production and to support chemists in development and manufacturing in their endeavor to constantly improve processes. Currently, the two teams consist of a staff of nine in total. The two teams are presented in the diagram below.

The structure of the Development team at the Evionnaz site is similar to that in Zofingen, and it covers all of the areas ­mentioned above with the exception of ­Process Technology for which the experts in Zofingen provide support.